Category Archives: Quotations

HUMP DAY QUOTE DAY: William Cameron Menzies on the Role of the Production Designer

William Cameron Menzies- Production Designer


“He must have knowledge of architecture of all periods and nationalities. He must be able to visualize and make interesting a tenement or a prison. He must be a cartoonist, a Continue reading


Filed under Hump Day Quote Day, Quotations

HUMP DAY QUOTE DAY: Tim Burton & Horror

.Tim Burton, in the early 80's, spent a lot of time developing Trick or Treat, a still-unproduced film about a little boy who spends Halloween with monsters trying to look human for the holiday.

Tim Burton, in the early 80’s, spent a lot of time developing Trick or Treat, a still-unproduced film about a little boy who spends Halloween with monsters trying to look human for the holiday.


“I never really got nightmares from movies. In fact, Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Hump Day Quote Day, Quotations



Today’s Hump Day Quote Day theme is Ambition. You can check out last week’s theme, Ego, here. The next quote theme will be Film.

What is Ambition?

1. an earnest desire for some type of achievement or distinction, as power, honor, fame, or wealth, and the willingness to strive for its attainment

2. the object, state, or result desired or sought after

3. desire for work or activity; energy


Let the Quotes Commence:

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.

– Les Brown

We are told never to cross a bridge until we come to it, but this world is owned by men who have ‘crossed bridges’ in their imagination far ahead of the crowd.


Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.

– C. Archie Danielson

Big results require big ambitions.

– James Champy

The men who succeed are the efficient few. They are the few who have the ambition and will power to develop themselves.

– Herbert N. Casson

Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.

– Thomas Jefferson

Ambition is a lust that is never quenched, but grows more inflamed and madder by enjoyment.

– Thomas Oway


Rose & Alison


Leave a comment

Filed under Advice, Hump Day Quote Day, Quotations



Today’s Hump Day Quote Day theme is an exploration of the Ego. You can check out the last hump day theme, Design, here. The next quote theme will be Ambition.

What is the ego?

1. The self, especially as distinct from the world and other selves.
2. In psychoanalysis, the division of the psyche that is conscious, most immediately controls thought and behavior, and is most in touch with external reality.
  • An exaggerated sense of self-importance; conceit.
  • Appropriate pride in oneself; self-esteem.
Source: The Free Dictionary

The Ego According to Freud:

William James (1890) proposed a distinction be...

Image via Wikipedia

Sigmund Freud proposed that the human psyche could be divided into three parts: Id, ego, and super-ego. Freud discussed this model in the 1920 essay Beyond the Pleasure Principle, and fully elaborated upon it in The Ego and the Id (1923), in which he developed it as an alternative to his previous topographic schema (i.e., conscious, unconscious, and preconscious). The id is the impulsive, child-like portion of the psyche that operates on the “pleasure principle” and only takes into account what it wants and di sregards all consequences. The term ego entered the English language in the late 18th century; Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790) described the game of chess as a way to “…keep the mind fit and the ego in check”. Freud acknowledged that his use of the term Id (das Es, “the It”) derives from the writings of Georg Groddeck. The term Id appears in the earliest writing of Boris Sidis, in which it is attributed to William James, as early as 1898.

The super-ego is the moral component of the psyche, which takes into account no special circumstances in which the morally right thing may not be right for a given situation. The rational ego attempts to exact a balance between the impractical hedonism of the id and the equally impractical moralism of the super-ego; it is the part of the psyche that is usually reflected most directly in a person’s actions. When overburdened or threatened by its tasks, it may employ defense mechanisms including denial, repression, and displacement. The theory of ego defense mechanisms has received empirical validation,[43] and the nature of repression, in particular, became one of the more fiercely debated areas of psychology in the 1990s.
Source: Wikipedia

Let the Quotes Commence:

Our own self-love draws a thick veil between us and our faults.

– Lord Chesterfield

Thinking is often regarded as an extension of the ego. Clever children in school base their egos on being clever and on being right all the time. They dislike group work because they cannot then show the rest of the class where the good idea originated. When the ego and thinking are treated as the same thing there is a reluctance to be wrong and a need to defend a point of view rather than to explore the situation. A person should be able to treat his thinking much as a tennis player treats his strokes: he should be able to walk off the court complaining that his backhand was not working very well on that occasion or that it required more practice. The new meta-system is very much in favour of the self, but a self that is based on a proper sense of dignity, not an inflated ego.  A person who dare not admit he is wrong inflates his ego but weakens his self.

– Edward De Bono

Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it.

– Colin Powell

An inflated consciousness is always egocentric and conscious of nothing but its own existence. It is capable of learning from the past, incapable of understanding contemporary events, and incapable of drawing right conclusions about the future. It is hypnotized by itself and therefore cannot be argued with. It inevitably dooms itself to calamities that must strike it dead.

– Carl Gustav Jung

Egotism is the anesthetic that dulls the pain of stupidity.

– Frank Leahy

How does this relate to the Art Department?

In the Art Department, no matter what the position, we are constantly working with creative and differing personalities. The film and television industry is a high stress and highly skilled field of work. Put those together and you have the perfect storm for ego eruptions on a daily basis. The ego often manifests itself in power struggles, intense defense mechanisms and the ever seductive blame game. When it comes right down to it people just don’t want to be embarrassed or admit wrong-doing, especially in an industry where there is always someone stepping on your heels ready and willing to take your job. I am no stranger to this myself but I’m not the only one and I take great solace in that (and that’s probably my ego talking).

It is incredibly hard to keep your ego in check when you have many people asking for your time, opinions, and skills all at once but awareness is the first step. I find what has helped me overcome battles recently is to take a well-timed bathroom break and take a step back. Even if just for 5 minutes. Look at the situation from 5 different people’s point of view in hopes to unbias yourself from what is going on. If you find you have done wrong or even something as simple as, for example, not considering someone else’s ideas or suggestions because they aren’t your own, go back, admit wrong, and apologize as professionally as possible. In the end you’ll manifest things differently the next time and you’ll earn more respect from your colleagues after apologizing or admitting you were wrong than being the egotistical jerk through and through. Examine your process and you’ll find a better way to deal with your ego. I guarantee it. After all the Art Department is a team like any other and as the saying goes, “There is no ‘I’ in Team”.


Rose XO.


“The super-ego retains the character of the father, while the more powerful the Oedipus complex was and the more rapidly it succumbed to repression (under the influence of authority, religious teaching, schooling and reading), the stricter will be the domination of the super-ego over the ego later on—in the form of conscience or perhaps of an unconscious sense of guilt.”
—Freud, The Ego and the Id (1923)

1 Comment

Filed under Advice, Hump Day Quote Day, Quotations

HUMP DAY QUOTE DAY: Responsibility

Today’s Hump Day Quote Day theme is Responsibility. You can check out the last theme, Imagination, here. Next weeks quote theme will be Fear.

Definition of Responsibility:

1) The state of being responsible, accountable, or answerable, as for trust, debt, or obligation.

2) That for which anyone is responsible or accountable; as, the responsibilities of power.

So then what does it mean to be responsible?



1. Liable to be required to give account, as of one’s actions or of the discharge of a duty or trust.
2. Involving personal accountability or ability to act without guidance or superior authority: a responsible position within the firm.
3. Being a source or cause.
4. Able to make moral or rational decisions on one’s own and therefore answerable for one’s behavior.
5. Able to be trusted or depended upon; reliable.
6. Based on or characterized by good judgment or sound thinking: responsible journalism.
7. Having the means to pay debts or fulfill obligations.
8. Required to render account; answerable: The cabinet is responsible to the parliament.

Those who enjoy responsibility usually get it; those who merely like exercising authority usually lose it.

– Malcolm Stevenson Forbes

An individual without information can’t take responsibility. An individual with information can’t help but take responsibility.

– Jan Carlzon

If you take responsibility for yourself you will develop a hunger to accomplish your dreams.

– Les Brown

Quality is everyone’s responsibility.

– W. Edwards Deming

It is, after all, the responsibility of the expert to operate the familiar and that of the leader to transcend it.

– Henry Kissinger

You can delegate authority, but you can never delegate responsibility for delegating a task to someone else. If you picked the right man, fine, but if you picked the wrong man, the responsibility is yours — not his.

– Richard E. Krafve

The most dangerous aspect of present-day life is the dissolution of the feeling of individual responsibility. Mass solitude has done away with any difference between the internal and the external, between the intellectual and the physical.

– Eugenio Montale

Champions take responsibility. When the ball is coming over the net, you can be sure I want the ball.

– Billie Jean King

The average American is just like the child in the family. You give him some responsibility and he is going to amount to something. He is going to do something. If, on the other hand, you make him completely dependent and pamper him too much, you are going to make him soft, spoiled and eventually a very weak individual.

– Richard Nixon

Whatever happens, take responsibility.

– Anthony Robbins


I feel more self-aware and I hope you feel the same. What was your favourite quote?

Rose XO.

1 Comment

Filed under Hump Day Quote Day, Quotations

Art Department Quotes


I’ve been away designing a TV Pilot this month and last, plus the Toronto International Film Festival also kept me away for a bit so I figured I should catch up on some September posting. A special Toronto Film Festival post to come with a focus, of course, on some great art direction I saw in a few films that knocked my socks off. Can’t wait to write about it. But for now here’s something I had started in August.

I am one of those weird people who loves collecting quotations.

They inspire me sometimes when I’m all out of ideas. Here are some that I liken to the world of production design and the art department in general. Just replace the words architecture or art with art direction or production design. You would be hard-pressed to find some actual famous quotes about production design. Enjoy!


If you are not a team player, you cannot be a designer.

Max Azria (of BCBG and Max Azria Group) on Project Runway

“Always design a thing by considering it in its next larger context — a chair in a room, a room in a house, a house in an environment, an environment in a city plan.”

Eliel Saarinen, “Time”, July 2, 1956

Architecture in general is frozen music.

F.W.J. Schelling, Philosophie der Kunst

“Form follows function.”

Louis Henri Sullivan, “Lippincott’s Magazine”, March, 1896

“In architecture as in all other operative arts, the end must direct the operation. The end is to build well. Well building has three conditions: Commodity, Firmness and Delight.”

Henry Watton

“Noble life demands a noble architecture for noble uses of noble men. Lack of culture means what it has always meant: ignoble civilization and therefore imminent downfall.”

Frank Lloyd Wright

The man who can but sketch his purpose beforehand in words is regarded as a wonder, and every artist and writer possesses that faculty. But gestation, fruition, the laborious rearing of the offspring, putting it to bed every night full fed with milk, embracing it anew every morning with the inexhaustible affection of a mother’s heart, licking it clean, dressing it a hundred times in the richest garb only to be instantly destroyed; then never to be cast down at the convulsions of this headlong life till the living masterpiece is perfected which in sculpture speaks to every eye, in literature to every intellect, in painting to every memory, in music to every heart! –this is the task of execution. The hand must be ready at every moment to work in obedience to the mind.

Honore de Balzac, Cousin Bette

“When I am finishing a picture, I hold some God-made object up to it – a rock, a flower, the branch of a tree or my hand – as a final test. If the painting stands up beside a thing man cannot make, the painting is authentic. If there’s a clash between the two, it’s bad art.”

Marc Chagall

“Principles for the Development of a Complete Mind: Study the science of art. Study the art of science. Develop your senses – especially learn how to see. Realise that everything connects to everything else.”

Leonardo DaVinci

It is the eye of ignorance that assigns a fixed and unchangeable color to every object; beware of this stumbling block.

Paul Gauguin

“Art is a step from what is obvious and well-known toward what is arcane and concealed.”

Kahlil Gibran, “A Handful of Sand on the Shore”

Fortunately art is a community effort – a small but select community living in a spiritualized world endeavoring to interpret the wars and the solitudes of the flesh.

Allen Ginsberg

Where do architects and designers get their ideas? The answer, of course, is mainly from other architects and designers, so is it mere casuistry to distinguish between tradition and plagiarism?

Stephen Bayley

It takes a great client to create great architecture.

Curtis W. Fentress

A bold architectural statement turns a public building into a landmark, but it is in the details where the architect becomes the real storyteller.

Curtis W. Fentress


I hope you too were inspired. Now get back to work and create something you never dreamed you were capable of.


Rose XO.


Filed under Art Department, Quotations